Even though God promises us the desires of our hearts, there are times and seasons when our desires are delayed or seem to be denied. Why is this? I am afraid that it is not easy to answer. I think one way to answer it is to consider that these are actually our times in the school of humility. Now, not many voluntarily enroll in this school. However, it seems that God requires us all to go through it. Joseph is a great biblical example of this. Here is what Scripture says about Joseph, and his beginning years in Egypt. Psalms 105:19 (NKJV) says, “Until the time that his word came to pass, The word of the LORD tested him.” I do not think anyone can get through the school of humility with an excellent grade or a trophy for the best student. (If we did, we would have to give it back.) We all struggle to get any kind of passing grade. The tests seem to be challenging in so many different ways. The best we can hope for is to learn to see things with a small measure of the attitude Jesus had. Here is what the Scriptures say about this.
Philippians 2:8 (NKJV) says, “And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.” My experience in the school of humility taught me that the person who grades these tests the toughest turns out to be me! I can easily disappoint myself with my failure to be humble. My pride can be like a shark, eagerly waiting to bite. This leads us to another class – the class of patience. It is no accident that the Bible calls patience “longsuffering.” This is not an elective class. It is mandatory. I have worked hard to get through this class, but I am not through it yet. My guess is that neither are you. Both these classes are God-given for the purpose of our personal growth. My advice is, if you want to grow, do not to waste the tests.